Posts Tagged ‘tuntablism’

Experimental Turntablism on Tour. James Kelly + Robert Curgenven

February 24, 2017

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I’m organising a three day tour with the composer and sound artist Robert Curgenven. Robert will be presenting his audio visual work Speculative Pataphysics created using three turntables, custom-made oscillators, 1930s acetates and custom-cut dubplates. I will be presenting an AV piece called Vinyl Minimalism in collaboration with The Lab Visuals. The concerts will be the final performances before the submission of my PhD which is focused on the creative application of a disc cutting lathe. I have been collaborating with the cellist Audrey Riley  and have cut records with Audrey’s improvisations using a variety of disc cutting techniques. The records will be remixed in performance using turntablist techniques.

Robert and I will be presenting two concerts in Leicester and Milton Keynes, with a workshop at Goldsmiths University, London. The concert at the Sue Townsend Theatre, Leicester is being generously supported by the music program at Leicester College and the Music Technology and Innovation Research Centre at De Montfort University, Leicester. The second concert is with the the guitarist Norberto Lobo at the MK Gallery Milton Keynes and we finish the tour with a workshop discussing how we use vinyl as part of our compositional process and in performance.

Tour Schedule

Wednesday 15th March
Sue Townsend Theatre, Leicester
7.30pm Free Entry.

Thursday 16th March
MK Gallery, Milton Keynes with Norberto Lobo
7.30pm £7 on door. Further info

Friday 17th March
Workshop at the University of Goldsmiths, London

Robert Curgenven
Speculative Pataphysics

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Three turntables, custom-made oscillators, 1930s acetates, custom-cut dubplates and a whole lot of bass – polyrhythmic phasing in light and sound  brings your whole body and the surrounding space into a face-melting physical constellation. Projections powered directly by the sound use Edwin Land’s (inventor of Polaroid sunglasses and Polaroid photography) work with colour shadows to create a head-wrecking synaesthetic experience with the spontaneous production of colours and patterns which may or may not be there. Warning: flickering lights, loud sounds, strong low frequency pressure.

Robert Curgenven is an Australian artist living in Cork, Ireland who sculpts air with sound. His work uses sound as a physical field of perception to encourage us to consider our physical experience of sound through our bodies, the space they inhabit and also the psychological shaping of time and duration by the auditory. For him sound is weather and his work entreats us to feel and hear air. His live performances, installations and album releases span pipe organ through to feedback, immersive resonances via turntables and custom-made vinyl, as well as carefully detailed field recordings from remote areas in Australia where he lived for many years. The Wire surmises that “behind the music lurk such [disparate] presences as Alvin Lucier, King Tubby, Murray Schafer and Eliane Radigue.”

From beginnings 35 years ago as a classically trained organist the past ten years have seen him release work on labels such as LINE, The Tapeworm, Winds Measure and his own Recorded Fields Editions. Curgenven has performed extensively across Australia and Europe, including Maerzmusik festival (Berlin), TodaysArt festival (Den Haag), Ultrahang Festival (Budapest), Sonic Acts (Amsterdam), Cork Film Festival, Lausanne Underground Film/Music Festival, Laznia Centre for Contemporary Art (Gdansk), Leipzig Gallery for Cont. Art, Northern Territory Centre for Cont. Art (Darwin) as well as residencies in Milan (O’), Venice (Forte Marghera), Rotterdam (Worm), Berlin (Transit Lounge) and Alice Springs (Art/Land/Culture). He has presented sound, audiovisual and sculptural work in group exhibitions for Transmediale (Berlin), 10 Years of Microsound (Diapason Gallery, New York), National Film & Sound Archive (Australia) and galleries throughout Australia & Europe including National Gallery of Australia (Canberra) and a solo exhibition at Centre for Contemporary Art, Torun (Poland).

James Kelly
Vinyl Minimalism

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As a turntablist for the last 15 years, James Kelly’s music explores the remixing of vinyl using DJ scratch techniques for the creation of new music. The piece Vinyl Minimalism takes his compositional approach in new directions by utilising a disc cutting lathe – a machine which is traditionally used in the manufacture of records. The mechanism and limitations of the lathe itself are used as an artistic tool to shape the music. The performance is created using three turntables to mix music which Kelly has cut to vinyl using a range of experimental disc cutting techniques that alter the timbre of sound recordings. Part performance, part exhibition, the work is presented is an audio visual performance in collaboration with The LAb Visuals. Live video feeds are mixed together making the compositional process accessible to the audience.

In 2009 Kelly was selected by UK Young Artists to represent the UK at the Young Artists Biennale in Skoje, Macedonia. Other notable performances include; Tate Modern, Modern Art Oxford, New Art Exchange, Nottingham and The Avenue Gallery, Northampton.

More experimental turntablism on this blog:

Turntable Music Symposium 2017

Experimental Turntablism Interview with Eleven Magazine

From the Archive: Experimental Turntablism

Turntable Music Symposium 2016

James Kelly and Adam Weikert – Green Ep

Live Electronic Improvisation with Adam Weikert

Janek Schaefer Performance, Leicester

Dirty Electronics Ensemble with DJ Sniff

Turntable Music Symposium 2016, University of Northampton

October 11, 2016

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In January I organised a symposium on Turntable Music with invited guests Karin Weissenbrunner (City University, London) and Lisa Busby (Goldsmiths University, London). The event was held in the Avenue Gallery, University of Northampton as part of my exhibition Vinyl Record Cutting as a Compositional Tool.

Karin presented her PhD research focused on musical analysis of experimental turntablist performance and Lisa discussed her approaches to performance using playback media. I also presented my experiments with record cutting and discussed the presentation of the work in the exhibition. In the evening we had a concert where both myself and Lisa performed individually and we also did a short improvisation together. Lisa performed tracks from her new album Fingers in The Gloss and my performance was an improvisation using records which I have cut as part of my research.  (more…)

From the Archive: Experimental Turntablism

July 12, 2016

vinyl record stickers experimental tuntablism

I’m in the final stretch of a practice led PhD developing approaches to turntablist composition and performance. I’ve been reflecting on how my approach has developed over the years from experiments with junk shop records to becoming a vinyl mastering engineer and cutting my own records for use in composition and performance. I recently unearthed a live set which was broadcast on Demon FM in 2006 and I can hear quite clearly how my turntablist aesthetic has developed over time.

When this performance was recorded, I was experimenting with turntablist improvisation using two turntables with a Vestax PCM 05 Pro DJ mixer that had an inbuilt delay unit. (more…)